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The sand mafia is emboldened by political support throughout India, within 50 km of any construction site, there is likely to be sand mining going on along river banks and coastal areas. The sand-hungry construction industry uses river bed sand to mix with concrete and for making bricks, as construction is now contributing almost 10% to gross domestic product. It’s a quick buck-making industry with very little investment. All you need is a truck, labourers, a driver, and a place to go and mine, a cut for police (thullas, cronies and their neta agents) keeps them happy as ever.

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